Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Cascade Crest Classic Race Report

Here's a quick race report:

The Cascade Crest Classic 100-miler has 21,000 feet of climb, (with an additional 21,000 feet of descent). I only got through about 25,000 feet of elevation change before I re-ruptured my
hamstring that I screwed-up back in June. Oh well, another couple of weeks of recovery. It's too bad, because my feet were unblistered and doing fine, I had just gotten over some stomach problems (by emptying its contents), and I still had plenty of energy at that point.

As far as he race goes, the course location was beautiful. Being in the rugged wilderness areas of the sheer-sided Cascade Mountains of Washington was awesome. The race organizers did a fantastic job putting the event on. This "one huge loop" course is a logistics nightmare for both the race officials and any support crews, but is pretty cool.

About the course. Within the first 3 miles we climbed 4500 feet and had a great view. We then lost 4000 feet within the next 2 miles. This pattern would repeat itself, in increments of 1000, 2000, 4000 and whatever feet. The footing was very tenuous, also, (when you could see the trail)...a lot of areas were overgrown to the point of not being able to see the trail at all. The race started at 10 a.m., and it was actually a warm 80+ degrees at the start and through the
rest of the day. There were a lot of sun-exposure areas while climbing, and that took quite a toll on a lot of runners. This year's race had about a 50-percent DNF rate, even with the generous cut-off times.

My hamstring injury had an additional side effect: after sitting on the plane for 4 hours, my back started hurting pretty bad. It has gotten progressively worse. I had to stay home yesterday afternoon from work and just lay on a cold pack with my legs up on pillows. (I couldn't even tie my own shoes, and couldn't sit up in a chair). Luckily, my "beer elbow" still works perfectly.

I will recover shortly, train hard, and be back there on race day next year. I wouldn't miss it for any reason. This race has me hooked! If anyone wants a decent fitness challenge, send in your
entry. I've got some good friends (up in Washington) that will crew for us.

I finally got to meet the bloggers, Rob and Michelle. I'll put out a more in-depth race report (with photos), later.

Happy trails,
Bad Ben

17 comments:

D said...

Bummer. This course sounds challenging - and challenging seems to be an understatement. I hope this hamstring issue doesn't keep you from running long.

Ben, aka BadBen said...

It's my back that's bothering me more than my hamstring, right now.

Caleb said...

I hope your back gets better soon. You'll get that little bastard next year!!!!!!!

Ben, aka BadBen said...

Damn rights, I'll kick its Cascadian butt!
Hey, thanks for the musical tip. That group ROCKS like Utopian F*ck Sauce! I have ZERO ear wax left. Viva la "Refused!"

backofpack said...

Ben,
It was great meeting you and your awesome support crew. Tell them thanks again for letting us borrow the phone to call Olga. See you there next year!
Michelle

robtherunner said...

It was great to meet you as well Ben. Yeah, it was a bummer for both of us and many others, but I will definitely be back next year with a different outlook and perspective than before. At least I can remember how beautiful the first part of the course is now.

olga said...

Bummer, I was toolate to meet you! Sorry about your hamstring, what, BTW, scares the heck out of me, because I am about to embrace a stupid idea of going for a 100 miler - not only I am still hurting, I am also totally unfit for that.
And I plan on CCCnext year, so we'll get our chance to meet!
Heal up. Any advice on ruptured hamstrings - send my way by email:)

Sarah said...

I'm sorry your injury is back and you couldn't finish CCC. I'm sure you'll kill that course next year! : )

turnip said...

Gosh I hope you are OK! Get some rest to keep from reinjuring that area...
Did you like Washington? My husband and I have been considering moving there in a few years...
Glad your beer elbow is fine! (that is one injury I couldn't deal with!)

Ben, aka BadBen said...

I like most of Washington State, (but not Spokane). I lived in Spokane for 23 years, but escaped 10 years ago, thank goodness.

Scott in Washington said...

Ben,

I'm sorry to read about your injury but glad to hear you are already gearing up for next year. I love the Cascades. If I ever decided to try for anything above a standard marathon I'll keep the CCC in mind - right in my backyard.

Rae said...

That sounds like a very challenging course! Sorry to hear about your injury. Guess it just needs to be treated with beer for the next few weeks!!

Julie B said...

OH, I'm sorry about the race and your hamstring. Love your attitude though, you'll heal up, train hard and be right back out there!

Lora said...

Hope your back is better soon. You've got a healthy and excited outlook. I admire that.

Meanwhile, have some homebrew and rest up!

Josh said...

Wow, I got tired just reading the report. I can't imagine actually doing it. Hope the back gets better soon!

Catra said...

hey Ben-

Awesome job!!! I need to get back to Washington to run CCC 100 again. I love that course very pretty. maybe next year. I should be finishing the PCT in Canada around that time of the year in 2007.

Catra

E-Speed said...

hope the back and hamstring are on the mend (and glad the beer elbow held up at least!)

Glad to see you are out and running a bit now!